Hartlepool United’s Neale Cooper ready for recalls

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HARTLEPOOL United boss Neale Cooper will happily recall Steve Howard and Paul Murray for tomorrow’s visit of Doncaster Rovers.

The Scot had this weekend’s League One game in mind when he rested his veteran duo for the midweek Johnstone’s Paint Trophy exit to Bradford City and the pair will both now return to the starting line-up.

“The pair of them have been carrying little niggles,” explained Cooper.

“In the case of Steve he’s had a bad shin, knee and back. But he goes out there and doesn’t moan, he gives it his lot.

“The same with Paul. “There’s a lot to like about him – he’s a winner. He’s getting to the later stages of his career but when he plays he gives me everything.”

Tony Sweeney, also dropped for that visit of The Bantams, is also expected to return.

“I spoke with Tony before the Bradford game and he accepted my decision. In fact, I think he was relieved,” said Cooper. “Sometimes when you step back from it you see something different, and when he came on he was like the old Sweeney.

“If I was in a battle I’d have him by my side.”

Simon Walton is certain to make way from the centre of midfield, while Middlesbrough loanee Charlie Wyke is also likely to start from the bench.

The 19-year-old striker, Cooper added: “I spoke to him and he was tired after the game because he hasn’t played that much competitive football.

“He had a good game and he’ll do well for us but he’s still just 19. I’ll see what we do for the weekend, but Ryan (Noble) and Steve link well together.”